Date of Award

12-10-2018

Degree Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

English

First Advisor

Renee Schatteman

Second Advisor

Jay Rajiva

Third Advisor

Scott Heath

Abstract

This dissertation seeks to complicate racial performance by suggesting that writers of the diaspora are actually using geographical, historical, and cultural touchpoints to create a sense of identity and belonging. Through analysis of African diasporic fictional characters that lie outside of classic black archetypes--I seek to seal the rift between these “outsiders” and the greater black community through their journeys in the texts. While my focus is on three points of contention within the black community--spirituality, sexuality, and speech--I suggest that the conscious movement to black Southern spaces allows RCBs agency to reconcile with their communities.

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